Photoshop Elements: Hard drive failed. Can I retrieve the photo from the thumbnail or have I lost the photos?

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  • Updated 7 years ago
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I'm new to PSE9. My hard drive with photos has died. PSE9 Organizer shows thumbnails of photos with '?'. Can I retrieve the photo from the thumbnail or have I lost the photos?
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Dennis Major

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Posted 7 years ago

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Photo of Jeffrey Tranberry

Jeffrey Tranberry, Sr. Product Manager, Digital Imaging

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Is your hard drive of images backed up to another drive or source (like Adobe.com)?
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Dennis Major

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This was my back-up. I expected my laptop to collapse not the external drive. I have no other back-up.
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Brett N, Official Rep

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The thumbnails are just that: thumbnails. They are going to be low resolution versions of your files, and are only recoverable as far as a tiny version of your file may be considered. If you have no other backups, I'm afraid this is a loss.
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Dennis Major

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Oh dear.
Thanks for the reply.
I am puzzled as to how the thumbnails show when the original has gone. Are the thumbnails just a function of PSE(?

My only hope for my photos is for the expensive data recovery from a local business.
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Jeffrey Tranberry, Sr. Product Manager, Digital Imaging

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That's correct. Elements generates thumbnails of the images (to increase browsing performance and keep track of offline images).
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Dennis Major

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Thank you for your reply.